PALO ALTO, Calif., Aug. 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Norwest Venture Partners announced today that it has made a growth equity investment in Vuori, a leading performance apparel brand based in Encinitas, California. Vuori is profitable and has experienced rapid growth since its founding in 2015. Jon Kossow, Managing Partner at Norwest, will join Vuori's board of directors as part of this meaningful minority investment. Vuori joins other consumer companies in Norwest's portfolio including Birdies, Casper Sleep, Grove Collaborative, Jolyn, Kendra Scott, Madison Reed, and Topo Athletic, and aligns with the firm's strategy of investing in direct-to-consumer and omni-channel brands. Norwest will secure a minority stake in Vuori as part of the deal.
Joe Kudla, Vuori's founder and CEO, first saw the opportunity to launch the company while living in San Diego. A lifelong athlete, Kudla was engaging in outdoor fitness activities such as hiking, yoga, running, and mountain biking. At the time, he was continually searching for the appropriate clothing to suit his own athletic endeavors, but found himself dissatisfied with the limited options available in the market.
Through his own experience, Kudla became aware of the massive vacancy for a brand that genuinely catered to the men's athletic market. In 2015, Kudla launched Vuori's first collection of men's athletic apparel that was designed to move and sweat in, but styled for everyday life. Thanks to Vuori's innovative fabrics and sleek, eye-catching designs, Kudla and his team were soon in business with reputable retail partners including REI, Nordstrom, Equinox, and Core Power Yoga. Today, Vuori offers products for men and women alike, each item meticulously designed with a new perspective on performance apparel that seamlessly transitions from physical activity to leisure and beyond.
"As devoted customers, it was apparent to us that Vuori had built versatile products with tremendous energy and soul," said Jon Kossow, managing partner at Norwest. "This is exactly the type of positive brand experience we search for in our consumer investments, and we look forward to supporting Joe and the team as they continue to bring new products to market and delight their customers."
"Since launching Vuori, we've added so many incredible team members to our community, all of them completely aligned with our mission to deliver the best activewear in the market," said Joe Kudla, founder and CEO at Vuori. "From our employees, to our retail partners, to the folks who drop by our stores just to say hello, starting this business has been a team effort since day one. We are thrilled that our team is further expanding to include Norwest, and look forward to what our partnership will bring."
Launched in 2015, Vuori merges technical clothing with a West Coast vibe that looks and feels great. Founder Joe Kudla didn't have to look far for inspiration; headquartered in the aspirational beach community of Encinitas, California. Vuori is a natural extension of its home environment where active, conscious and creative people inspire those around them every day. For all customers, Vuori upholds an "Investment in Happiness" policy which guarantees full refunds for any product buyers are not fully satisfied with. In addition to a fruitful ecommerce business and physical stores in Encinitas, Manhattan Beach, and San Francisco, Vuori's assortment of men's and women's apparel is sold in select Nordstroms, Fred Segal, REI, and Equinox fitness clubs. Please visit www.vuoriclothing.com for more information.
About Norwest Venture Partners
Norwest Venture Partners is a leading growth equity and venture investment firm managing more than $7.5 billion in capital. Since our inception, we have invested in more than 600 companies. The firm invests in early to late stage companies across a wide range of sectors with a focus on consumer, enterprise, and healthcare. We offer a deep network of connections, operating experience, and a wide range of impactful services to help CEOs and founders advance on their journey. Norwest has offices in Palo Alto and San Francisco, with subsidiaries in India and Israel. For more information, please visit Norwest. Follow Norwest on Twitter @NorwestVP.